Local businessman Ronnie Boone testifies in political corruption case of Norfolk’s City Treasurer

Posted at 9:36 AM, Nov 17, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-17 17:09:06-05

NORFOLK, Va. - The corruption trial of Norfolk City Treasurer Anthony Burfoot started its eighth day Thursday.

Wednesday, a city employee told a jury she lied about her dealings with Burfoot in an effort to protect him and herself.

Janelle Morris is expected to be crossed examined Thursday morning by Burfoot’s Attorney, Andrew Sacks.

Businessman Ronald Boone is also back at the courthouse to testify in the case.

Burfoot's personal life was exposed in court Wednesday as his political corruption trial.

Two analysts with the FBI told the jury how they analyzed alleged phones made by Anthony Burfoot to Dwight Etheridge, the star witness who testified that he engaged in corruption with Burfoot at the expense of tax payers.

The FBI dissected the bank accounts of both men bank accounts. They tried to make the connection that money was leaving Etheridge’s accounts and going into Burfoot’s accounts. They used charts to explain. Sacks fought back poking holes in the connection between the two.

Morris, a former employee of the Norfolk Redevelopment and Housing Attorney and a current employee from the Norfolk City Treasurer’s office left court after taking the stand Wednesday afternoon.

She told the jury she lied to the FBI and a grand jury about her dealings with Anthony Burfoot who is her current boss.

Morris said Burfoot told her he thought the Treasurer’s Office was bugged by the FBI and she lied to protect Burfoot and herself.

She said she signed an immunity agreement with the government Wednesday that would prevent her from getting into trouble for those allege lies.
She along with another woman, Attorney Antoinette Bacon took the stand and said Burfoot took them to a beach house in the Outter Banks beach which federal prosecutors have said is Boone's.

The local businessman was seen in the courthouse Wednesday but he didn't testify and left around 5 o'clock in the evening surrounded by his lawyers.

Boone is a key witness for the prosecution. Two months ago he pled guilty to bank fraud and political corruption pointing the finger at Burfoot.

Andrews Sacks, Burfoot Attorney has said that the accusations against his client are complete lies and that criminals are using Burfoot as a scapegoat to prevent being prosecuted by the federal government.

Sacks told News 3 there has many inconsistencies with witness testimony. Tuesday he said he is very pleased with how the trial has been going so far.

"I'm very pleased. We think we're getting a very fair trial, very attentive jury. We think the justice system is going to prevail and we're just going to keep our nose to the grindstone,” said Sacks.

Burfoot has been charged with perjury and political corruption, facing a total of 8 charges.

Court began at 10 a.m.

More coverage of the trial:

Norfolk government employee said she lied to FBI to protect herself and Treasurer

Norfolk Councilman takes the stand during City Treasurer corruption trial

NFL legend Bruce Smith takes stand in Norfolk City Treasurer case

Witness testified he told another city councilman about alleged bribes he was giving Burfoot

Key witness takes the stand in Norfolk City Treasurer corruption case

Norfolk City Clerk takes the stand and opening statements heard in trial against City Treasurer

Jury selected in Norfolk City Treasurer Anthony Burfoot’s corruption trial

Top Norfolk officials called to testify in trial of City Treasurer Anthony Burfoot